Forty women to be screened for cervical cancer

Jean Marie Harimenshi, Managing Director of Bujumbura Pathology Center-BUJAPATH, a center specialized in the screening and diagnosis of cancer in Burundi, says cervical cancer is the second most common cancer among women in Burundi.

A patient being consulted at BUJAPATH center

“It is a disease that kills women silently. They do not have the courage to do the screening due to its cost and lack of information,” says Dr. Harimenshi.
In a screening campaign organized by BUJAPATH, 40 women-all members of the collective of women associations-CAFOB will be screened free of charge thanks to the support of Ecobank.
“It’s a good thing to be screened in time. It will allow them to follow closely their health condition,” he says.

Dr. Harimenshi adds that there are no exact figures of people affected by cervical cancer in Burundi. In 2019, BUJAPATH screened 156 cases and 14% of them tested positive for the disease.

Agrippine Nyandwi, Chairperson of the Association of People with Cancer –APAC says the lack of information and the high screening cost constitute a barrier for women. “Few women are aware of the importance of timely screening,” she says.

For her, the government should make the equipment available at each hospital and screen women at a lower cost. She adds that more effort should be made to raise awareness of women to be screened as it had been on HIV. «It is a curable disease if it is detected in time”, she concludes.